Farmers in 4 counties benefit from Shofco certified maize seeds worth KSh50M
- Shofco has partnered with the national government and county governments who are guiding farmers on the best way to plant the maize seeds.
- “We are grateful to county and national government agricultural officers who have joined us in this exercise. Their expertise in the area of agriculture will go along way in ensuring that farmers get the best of the maize seeds we are distributing. We also want to thank the First Lady of Trans Nzoia County Lilian Natembeya for working with us,” Dr. Odede stated.
Over 50,000 farmers in four counties have a reason to smile after benefiting from Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO) certified maize seeds worth over Ksh50 million.
The farmers, drawn from Trans Nzoia, Siaya, Kisumu and Nyeri counties, began receiving their seeds on Tuesday, March 14.
“We began the distribution of the certified seeds in Trans Nzoia on Tuesday which is Kenya’s bread basket, and we were in Siaya today. As Kenyans, we are happy because of the rainfall we are receiving at the moment after a long drought and we should take advantage to plant maize which is our staple food,” SHOFCO CEO Dr. Kennedy Odede said on Wednesday.
Dr. Odede stated that his organisation carried out research to find the best performing maize seeds that can take a short time to mature.
“Through research, we were able to get seeds that can mature within three months and do well in the areas we are distributing them. We also want farmers to take advantage of the current rains to plant them, because we do not know how long the rains will last,” he said.
He added: “This initiative is also meant to support farmers and help them utilise their lands to fight poverty and stem the rural-urban migration that results in mushrooming of slums.”
The organisation has partnered with the national government and county governments who are guiding farmers on the best way to plant the maize seeds.
“We are grateful to county and national government agricultural officers who have joined us in this exercise. Their expertise in the area of agriculture will go along way in ensuring that farmers get the best of the maize seeds we are distributing. We also want to thank the First Lady of Trans Nzoia County Lilian Natembeya for working with us,” Dr. Odede stated.
South East Alego Member of County Assembly (MCA) Scholastica Madowo lauded SHOFCO for giving seeds to the farmers in her ward.
“We are grateful to SHOFCO for donating maize seeds in this area. We have just come out of very dry season and farmers in this area depend on rain-fed agriculture.
“We have now started receiving rains and this week, members of SHOFCO were really excited after receiving four kilograms of maize seeds. 3000 of them in my area have benefitted from the seeds and we are really thankful to SHOFCO,” the MCA said.
Umala Location Chief in Ugunja Grace Anyango said she was ready to collaborate with SHOFCO to uplift the lives of his people.
“SHOFCO is greatly supporting the government in ensuring that we eradicate poverty in villages. This is not the first time SHOFCO is helping us here because we have received scholarship bursaries before,” she said.
Agnes Nyongesa, a beneficiary of the seeds in Kitale, said the organisation came through for her when she needed it the most.
“SHOFCO seeds have really come at the right time. When the rains started two weeks ago, I was wondering where I could the maize seeds to plant on my ready farm.
“I am now going to just look for fertilizer and I will be okay to plant my acre farm. Thank you SHOFCO CEO Kennedy Odede for remembering us. May God bless you and give you more,” Agnes said.
Agnes was among 1,106 Shofco Urban Network (SUN) members who received the maize seeds in Kitale on Tuesday, March 14.
Johnstone Omollo, Siaya SUN Chairman, said the organisation has also dug water pans for the county residents to harvest rain water.
“SHOFCO has come through for many who did not have money to buy maize seeds in this county. We are also grateful because the organisation is currently digging water pans in this area to harvest rain water. We are preparing to collect as much water as possible so that in case another drought season comes, we will not be affected,” Johnstone said.
This is the second the organisation is donating maize seeds.
Last year, more than 100,000 smallholder farmers in Kakamega, Vihiga, Busia, Bungoma, Siaya, Nandi, Uasin Gishu and Kilifi counties benefitted from the seeds donation worth Ksh43 million.
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